Snow driving craziness
Posted: Wednesday, February 3, 2010 8:01 pm
By: By Lisa Smartt
When it snows in Tennessee, we learn that there are two groups of people in the world. Only two. Last week the radio and TV pronouncements were clearly stated: DO NOT be out on the roads unless it is an emergency. The roads have been declared excessively dangerous. Group No. 1 says to themselves, “We will choose to stay home. We will not drive on the roads. People who know about road safety have told us not to go on the roads. We can trust them. We will stay right here at home unless one of our children swallows a moldy quarter and needs emergency surgery. Even if we run out of milk or bread, we will drink water and eat dried up spaghetti noodles. No one has ever died from drinking water and eating dry noodles.” My husband and I are proud card-carrying members of Group No. 1. It’s a rather peaceful way to live.
Group No. 2 is also made up of people who clearly HEARD the radio announcements. It’s not that they did not HEAR the warnings. It’s that they have a problem HEEDING the warnings. This group is made up of the same people who HEARD their second-grade teacher say, “Everyone, get in your seats, please.” But they still stood at the pencil sharpener looking out the window and hoping that crispy steak fingers and white gravy were being served for lunch. Group No. 2 doesn’t feel that the warnings apply to them. I’m not talking about policemen, emergency workers, linemen, etc. No. You know who I’m talking about. I’m talking about the people who slid to Dollar General on a thin sheet of ice to pick up pork rinds and Mountain Dew. You know who you are. Don’t make me call names.
As I observe the two groups of people, I learn a lot about men in general. For some men, snow is just snow. It’s a mild inconvenience. For other men, it’s a glaring opportunity to rebel against the fundamental rules of childhood. The minute someone tells them it’s dangerous and they ought not do it ... everything in them cries out, “Hey! Watch this! Watch me jump off the monkey bars backwards and break both my legs.” “Hey Guys, I bet I can hold onto this electric fence for more than three seconds.” “That bull might chase me, but he’ll never catch me.” “I don’t need a helmet. I never wreck.”
Be honest. Snow-covered roads provide the opportunity for some grown men to go against the rules ... and win! And it’s all about the winning! How do I know this is true? Isn’t it obvious? What’s the first thing a guy does after sliding to the store and arriving safely home with a gallon of ice cream? Right. He calls his friend. “Hey Pete, yeah, they say it’s bad, but I went to the store in the truck just now and I made it back home with no problems at all. Of course, there were lesser men on the side of the roads and in the ditches. I guess they didn’t learn to drive a tractor at the age of 7. Yeah. Poor guys.”
My husband plans to stay home until the roads are deemed safe for travel. He has nothing to prove. Of course, there’s always the possibility one of our boys will swallow a moldy quarter and have to be rushed to the emergency room in horribly bad weather. If that happens, Phil will happily step up to the plate. And yes. We’ll hear the story for the rest of our lives.
For more information about Lisa Smartt, visit her Web site lisasmartt.com.
Published in The Messenger 2.3.10
Lisa Smartt, The Smartt View